Fat plants

Euphorbia atrispina


succulent shrub, native to southern Africa, in nature reaches 100-120 cm in height. It has cylindrical stems, poorly branched, erect, characterized by 4-5 ribs, of dark green color; the ribs are characterized by long sharp spines, the new spines are dark brown (hence the name of the plant), they become gray as the years go by. In spring, the small yellow flowers bloom at the apex of the new thorns. Very showy plant, it tends over time to produce large roundish cushions, very showy; in spring the contrast between the dark spines and the intense yellow flowers is decidedly strong. Remember that the latex contained in euphorbia plants can be poisonous if ingested and can cause skin irritation; then we handle the plants with care.


they love very sunny positions, where they can enjoy a few hours of direct sun every day; they can withstand short frosts, but it is advisable to grow them during the cold months, indoors or in a cold greenhouse, so that they are sheltered from excessively harsh temperatures. Even at home we try to keep them in a very bright, possibly sunny, place.


they water only when the ground is very dry; from March to September the watering must be regular, more or less abundant depending on the climate. During the winter we can reduce the waterings, but let's remember to moisten the soil sporadically.


it needs a soft and very well drained and permeable soil, in order to avoid water stagnation; we prepare an ideal substrate mixing a part of peat, a part of pumice stone and a part of river sand washed. These plants are preferably grown in pots, so that they can be moved with the arrival of cold, remember to repot them every 3-4 years.


it happens by cuttings, quite easily, removing one of the lateral branches; to facilitate the development of new roots it is advisable to immerse the terminal part of the branch in the rooting hormone, before burying it; the young plants thus obtained should not be watered for a few days. In spring it is possible to sow the small seeds, which must be kept moist and in a partially shaded place.

Euphorbia atrispina: Pests and diseases

they fear the cochineal and the mites; excess watering can favor the development of rot, which can quickly compromise the entire plant.